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Switch to Forum Live View School District Apologizes for Debate Assignment About the Existence of God
1 year ago  ::  Oct 28, 2015 - 10:53AM #1
Ironhold
Posts: 12,363
Local news source

A Texas school teacher is in major trouble after a graded classroom assignment in which kids were forced to argue against the existence of God.

Even the school administration has said that the teacher was out of line on this one.

Should be interesting to see what happens... 
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1 year ago  ::  Oct 28, 2015 - 11:14AM #2
mountain_man
Posts: 44,029

It was a debate exercise. No one had to deny anything. Further proof that there is something in the water in Texas making people go crazy.

Dave - Just a Man in the Mountains.

There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.   Isaac Asimov
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1 year ago  ::  Oct 28, 2015 - 11:38AM #3
Do_unto_others
Posts: 11,942

Oct 28, 2015 -- 10:53AM, Ironhold wrote:

Local news source

A Texas school teacher is in major trouble after a graded classroom assignment in which kids were forced to argue against the existence of God.

Even the school administration has said that the teacher was out of line on this one.

Should be interesting to see what happens... 



Having a debate is not "forcing" anyone to do anything.


Better, perhaps, if the students had been "forced" to prove "God is real"???

Moderated by Merope on Oct 28, 2015 - 01:30PM
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1 year ago  ::  Oct 28, 2015 - 1:08PM #4
Midutch
Posts: 5,975

The title of the assignment is "Identifying Factual Claims, Commonplace Assertions and Opinions".


It then goes on:


Part A (20 pts) Directions: On the next blank page in your reader's notebook, copy each statement. Next to the statement identify what type of statement it is.


- If the statement is a factual claim, write F next to it.


- If the statement is a commonplace assertion, write CA next to it.


- If the statement is an opinion, write O next to it.


The line in question is "There is a God".


Nothing there about "god does not exist".


The answer should be "CA", since the existence of a "god" has never been factually demonstrated, despite the efforts THOUSANDS of clergy, theologians and philosphers and the faith of BILLIONS of devout believers in THOUSANDS of gods over the course of THOUSANDS of years.


IOW a tempest in a teapot because someone got mad that their commonplace assertion (and deeply held belief, no doubt) was exposed as not being factual.


If the student wrote "factual claim" as his/her answer, it should, of course, be marked wrong.


This does NOT, repeat, NOT say anything about the existence of "god". It is merely an exercise in identifying the type of, and real world veracity of, claims that people make.


Would the people arguing so vehemently be so bent out of shape if the student was marked wrong if the statement was "there are aliens"? There may indeed be aliens, but the statement is NOT a demonstrably factual claim. The "there is a god" statement is factually no different.

"creationism" ... 2000+ years worth of ABYSMAL FAILURE ... and proud of it.
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1 year ago  ::  Oct 28, 2015 - 1:22PM #5
TemplarS
Posts: 7,522

Well, there was more to it than that.


"Jordan said her reading teacher said both her answers were wrong and that she had to admit God wasn't real."


That is much different from saying the existence of God is not a proven fact.  If one of the multiple choice answers had been "God  is not real", that would have been an incorrect response as well.


In my opinion, the use of this question in this way was a bad choice.  Actually, a debate about God would have been better, so long as the grades were based on the soundness of the logic used and not the answer.  I remember when my girls were in school, they had an assignment where they were forced to argue in favor of a position they did not believe in; the point was not to force the opposite belief on them, but to get them to consider both sides of an argument.  Something the people in Washington (let alone Austin) could benefit from, BTW.


 


 

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1 year ago  ::  Oct 28, 2015 - 1:33PM #6
TPaine
Posts: 10,308

Oct 28, 2015 -- 1:22PM, TemplarS wrote:


Well, there was more to it than that.


"Jordan said her reading teacher said both her answers were wrong and that she had to admit God wasn't real."


That is much different from saying the existence of God is not a proven fact.  If one of the multiple choice answers had been "God  is not real", that would have been an incorrect response as well.


In my opinion, the use of this question in this way was a bad choice.  Actually, a debate about God would have been better, so long as the grades were based on the soundness of the logic used and not the answer.  I remember when my girls were in school, they had an assignment where they were forced to argue in favor of a position they did not believe in; the point was not to force the opposite belief on them, but to get them to consider both sides of an argument.  Something the people in Washington (let alone Austin) could benefit from, BTW.



+1

"To argue with a man who has renounced the use and authority of reason, and whose philosophy consists in holding humanity in contempt, is like administering medicine to the dead, or endeavoring to convert an atheist by scripture."-- Thomas Paine: The Crisis No. V (March 21, 1778)
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1 year ago  ::  Oct 28, 2015 - 1:43PM #7
Midutch
Posts: 5,975

Oct 28, 2015 -- 1:22PM, TemplarS wrote:


Well, there was more to it than that.


"Jordan said ..."


There might be more to this as well.


"creationism" ... 2000+ years worth of ABYSMAL FAILURE ... and proud of it.
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1 year ago  ::  Oct 28, 2015 - 3:35PM #8
BDboy
Posts: 8,220

Everything sounds fine to me. Except the topic chosen.


Debate excercise is an important part in education. And having some "Common sense" is an important part of being a teacher.



While I do joke about Texans and their "Unusual" choices in picking governors (Bush Jr, Rick perry etc) but most of those folks are religious. Forcing them to speak against excistance of God can be difficult for some.



No one here needs me to remind this, just being courtious never hurts anyone.

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1 year ago  ::  Oct 28, 2015 - 3:56PM #9
mountain_man
Posts: 44,029

Oct 28, 2015 -- 1:22PM, TemplarS wrote:

Well, there was more to it than that.


"Jordan said her reading teacher said both her answers were wrong and that she had to admit God wasn't real."


It sounds to me like Jordan did not understand the teacher or the assignment.

Dave - Just a Man in the Mountains.

There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.   Isaac Asimov
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1 year ago  ::  Oct 28, 2015 - 4:29PM #10
Girlchristian
Posts: 13,685

Oct 28, 2015 -- 1:22PM, TemplarS wrote:


Well, there was more to it than that.


"Jordan said her reading teacher said both her answers were wrong and that she had to admit God wasn't real."


That is much different from saying the existence of God is not a proven fact.  If one of the multiple choice answers had been "God  is not real", that would have been an incorrect response as well.


In my opinion, the use of this question in this way was a bad choice.  Actually, a debate about God would have been better, so long as the grades were based on the soundness of the logic used and not the answer.  I remember when my girls were in school, they had an assignment where they were forced to argue in favor of a position they did not believe in; the point was not to force the opposite belief on them, but to get them to consider both sides of an argument.  Something the people in Washington (let alone Austin) could benefit from, BTW.


 


 




+1

"No matter how dark the moment, love and hope are always possible." George Chakiris

“For those who believe, no proof is necessary. For those who don't believe, no proof is possible.” Stuart Chase
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